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Boss Types, Assemblies & Meta-gaming

Fri 13 Mar 2020, 22:55

Howdy, all. I'm currently preparing to run my first campaign of M:YZ. I've read about handling the Assembly as a meta-game event, but I have a feeling that my players will not be able to objectively remove themselves from their own or their character's stances on what should happen regarding the development of the Ark. In order to tie the Assembly directly to the Ark and the will of the Bosses, (and to do just an absurd amount of spreadsheet work for almost no reason), I came up with a system that others may find useful in their own games.

The first thing I did was make a chart of the two government and the two economy projects available to the People. Suffrage opposite Autocracy, and Collectivism opposite Free Enterprise. By RAW, Free Enterprise doesn't get along with Autocracy but we'll wave that for now. Chart these to opposite sides and top and bottom of a grid divided into 9 squares (like a D&D alignment grid). I then assigned one of each of the Boss types (M:YZ pp. 99–100), based on how I felt their priorities would place them (The Revolutionary in the corner of Suffrage and Collectivism, the Bureaucrat in the center, Kingpin in the corner of Autocracy and Free Enterprise, etc.). I have a chart but I'm not sure if I can share it with the Boss types descriptive text on it.

Then, I reduced the DEV bonuses of each project into 1 point for each +D6 bonus it would give upon completion. This is where I got deeply spreadsheety. Each Boss, based on position on the chart, is focused on 1 or 2 DEVs as determined by its association with the government and economy Projects. Each boss can be either supportive (×2), neutral (×0.5), or opposed (×-1) to Projects that are associated with their interests. For instance, the Revolutionary has a ×2 modifier to the Food Supply and Culture bonuses of a project, but a ×-1 penalty to both the Technology and Warfare bonuses. I multiplied each DEV bonus by each Boss's relevant modifiers. This gave me a table that lists how invested a Boss (and by proxy the mutants they command) would be in any available project. I pick the highest score (or break a tie) for each Boss and that is the project that they vote for at the Assembly.

If a Boss dies, there's no one to fill that Boss type and project votes will begin to veer away from that Boss's interests. Further, I may modify Boss's priorities based on goings-on in the Ark and how popular they are at the time. Plenty of room for fudging the numbers. I may end up further modifying their priorities based on each Boss's skill ranks in Command. Haven't fleshed out that detail yet.

To not have the math devolve into an unsustainable nightmare, I determined that the PCs would gain a special status among the People, as an away-team of sorts. Each PC gets to vote on an available project after all the Boss votes have been counted. This way they can swing the vote one way or the other without just cherry-picking every project they as players want the most.

TL;DR you can make the bosses and projects generate project priority at an assembly while still giving PCs enough influence to tip the favor in one or more directions and also I have a spreadsheeting problem.

I hope someone finds this helpful, or at least interesting.